Patriots Top No. 10 Owls for First Win of Season

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The difference in Tuesday night’s game at No. 10 Rice (2-2) from the previous three games against Creighton for Dallas Baptist (1-3) came down to one man – Freshman Caulin Cragle. Unable to hold a lead in any of the three games against Creighton to open the season, DBU again found themselves in control late in a game and, this time, it was Cragle, making his first appearance as a collegiate player, who steadied the ship for DBU and helped them to a 6-4 win in Houston. Jay Calhoun picked up the win after a solid five innings of work in his season debut.

Dallas Baptist opened the game much like they have each game this season – with a lead. Michael Miller singled and moved up to second on a Boomer Collins ground out. With two outs, Duncan McAlpine collected his fourth RBI of the season and DBU had an early 1-0 lead. They would extend that lead to 4-0 after RBI in the third inning by Collins,Chane Lynch and Austin Listi. The two out groundball up the middle for Listi was the first collegiate hit for the freshman.

Rice would get one of those runs back in the bottom of the inning after a leadoff single by Leon Byrd and an error on a pick-off throw from Calhoun put a runner on third base with one out. The sophomore right-hander would give up a single to score Byrd but nothing else in the inning to get his offense back on the field. DBU would threaten again the fourth by loading the bases with two outs but would not score as a called strikeout of McAlpine ended the threat.

In the sixth, DBU loaded the bases again with two outs after a Ronnie Mitchell single and walks to Collins and McAlpine. This time with the sacks full, the Patriots did not waste an opportunity as Mike Wesolowski was able to muscle a ball through the right side to score two and push the lead to five runs.

From there, Rice would score two in the sixth and one in the seventh off a bevy of DBU hurlers to make it a 6-4 game to the eighth. Cragle, who entered in the seventh in relief of Patrick Hicks, was outstanding in his collegiate debut, throwing 1.2 innings and closing out the eighth inning by inducing a 6-3 double play to erase the only hit he allowed. He came out to start the ninth and, after giving up a long fly ball out, was lifted in favor of Michael Smith. Smith would strike out both batters he faced to collect the save for starter Jay Calhoun (1-), who went five innings and gave up only one run.

DBU will play host to Mississippi Valley State beginning Thursday night at Horner Ballpark. First pitch is set for 6:30pm with the Pregame Show beginning at 6:10 pm on the Patriot Broadcasting Network.

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